Earlier this week, Bjarke Ingels Group revealed the future of public transport, the Hyperloop. With a joint agreement between RTA and Hyperloop One signalling exploration into the potential of the high-speed route, the UAE is on track to be the first nation to bring this concept to fruition.
The high-speed transportation system will feature a fleet self-driving pods feeding of the existing public transport networks of the city. The pods will be able to pick up passengers along their way to the main transport hub – a sunken and circular station named a ‘portal’ situated at the foot of the Burj Khalifa – the world’s tallest building.
“We are heading for a future where our mental map of the city is completely reconfigured, as our habitual understanding of distance and proximity – time and space – is warped by this virgin form of travel,” said said BIG founder Bjarke Ingels. “With Hyperloop One we have given form to a mobility ecosystem of pods and portals, where the waiting hall has vanished along with waiting itself.”
BIG designed the Dubai Hyperloop for Hyperloop One, a Los Angeles-based company that expanded on the original supersonic Hyperloop that was proposed by Elon Musk to link Los Angeles and San Francisco in just 30 minutes. In the UAE, the Hyperloop will cut the travel time between Dubai and Abu Dhabi to a flat 12 minutes.
At the Portal, departure gates are numbered and arranged in tiers around the edge. Pods of six passengers will be loaded onto a transporter – a pressurised vessel attached to a chassis for levitation and propulsion- that can travel at a speed of 1,100 kilometres per hour. Once the pods have arrived at their destination they “hyperjump” into another portal before travelling onto the road to drop passengers off at their final destination.
In addition to connecting Dubai to Abu Dhabi in 12 minutes, Hyperloop One’s also plans to connect the Emirate to Riyadh in 48 minutes, Doha in 23 minutes and Muscat in 27 minutes.